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CORONER LANKESTER ON CRINOLINE.

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CORONER LANKESTER ON CRINOLINE. An inquiry of a painful nature was held on Friday by Dr. L master, coroner for Central Middlesex, at the White Hart Hocei, Welbeck-strect, Cavendish-square, touching the death of Mrs. Elizabeth Anne Lindsay, a widow, and the landlady of the above establishment. Hannah Haigb, a servant of the deceased, deposed that between two and three o'clock on Tuesday morning last she was awoke from a sensation of suffocation from smoke. She immediately jumped out of bed and went out on the landing, and seeing flames of fire issuing from her mistress's bed-room door, she awoke the barmaid and called the barman. The barman and herself went into the room and saw her mistress lying on the floor rolling about against the door on the carpet, with frantic efforts to Toll the carpet round her. They directly extinguished the fire as well as they could, and placed Mrs. Lindsay (fearfully burnt.) on the bed. She was quite sensible then, and told witness that the accident occurred from her cap-string catching fire. She was dressed. By the Coroner: Witness could not say whether she caught fire from her crinoline, though indications might lead one to suppose so, as her person was more burnt below and her clothes were totally destroyed to her waist.' She had crinoline on at the time. Francis Clarke, M. R C.S said he was called to attend the deceased, and did so immediately, and found a. very strong smell of burning (,n arriving at the house. He foun'i pieces of steel crinoline on the stairs, and on enter- ing her bedroom found the hapless woman lying on her bed with a sheet over her, burnt all over her body. arms, 'and legs in a dreadful manner. She was sensible, and explained how the accident occurred. She said that, while in the act of undressing, a light muslin dress which she had on caught fire from her candle. She ran out of the room, downstairs, and back again, finding slib was I unable to make anyone hear. She was so severely burnt that there was no question as to the cause of death. The burns were so extensive that in taking a ring off one of her fingers the flesh came off with it, and there was not an unburnt spot on her body scarcely the size of a shilling. The Corcner said there was an important question raised by the evidence in ihi3 case as to the cause of these burns, from which the deceased met her death. The two statements, one that her cap-string caught fire, and the other that it was her dress. seemed inconsistent. The fact that there were proofs of burns in the larder, all up the stairs, in the drawing-room, and past a door where two servants were sleeping, led to the supposition that she was confused in her statements.. There seemed to be very strong evidence that crinoline-that absurd article of .dress now worn under women's clothes—was the real cause. A fearful number of deaths from crinoline were continually taking place. He alone held two inquests in a month on women destroyed by fire from crinoline among a population of a millien souls; that would make, it may be supposed, an average of six deaths from that cause alone per month in London. Such a ratio through the whole of England made the sacrifice from crino- line very alarming, and he hoped would make some imr-ression on society- But the sacrifice did not end there; that objectionable and dangerous style of dres3 was carried into the factories. It was only the other day the wife of ac engineer was drawn into the machinery and frightfully injured. On several occasions gills bad been so destroyed or injured in fac- tories. In Austria some distinguished ladies appeared to be determined not to receive any lady who wore crino- line. -Someinnnential ladies here should set their faces against it. If women would not abandon that. dress, it was as well for him to state that crinoline could not be made anti-combustible. He had been written to on the subject by philanthropic ladies. One lady in Brighton wrote to him the other day, stating that for one shilling in the pound dresses could fee secured from inflamma- bility, Then there was another preservative from igni- tion from fire-places by the invariable use of wire tire- guards. He thought it important for juries to take the subject into their serious consideration, though it may not be clearly shown, as in this case. He made these remarks hoping they might make a beneficial impression. Steel crinoline he looked upon as the most dangerous, because not so compressible. Verdict—"Accidental death from fire."

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